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    What’s new with Group Policy in Windows 8

    I'm sure Microsoft will talk about the improvements they have made to AD and Group Policy on their Windows 8 blog at some point, but in the meantime I thought this was worth posting...

    Link: grouppolicy.biz/2011/10/whats-new-with-group-policy-in-windows-8/

    The Windows Developer Preview version of Windows Server 8 has been on MSDN now for a while therefore I setup a Domain Controller and found some very interesting new Group Policy features lurking…

    Group Policy Infrastructure Status
    If you click on the domain name in GPMC you will notice there is a new tab called “Infra Status”. As the page says “The page shows the status of Active Directory and Sysvol (DFSR) replication for this domain as it relates to Group Policy”. This will obviously be a great troubleshooting tool for Group Policy settings that are not applying to the computers in your organisation due to AD replication issues.



    Group Policy Update
    If you right click on any OU in you AD you will see a new menu option called “Group Policy Update…”.



    What is particularly interesting is the text “FORCE A GROUP POLICY UPDATE" meaning that you can now force the group policy update to all computers in a Organisations Unit. This would effectively mean that administrators can now make changes to their computers without having to wait the default 90 minutes to wait for group policy to refresh on a computer.





    Seeing the task was scheduled I then took a look at the scheduled tasks on the computer being targeted and found that it had created two scheduled tasks to perform a gpupdate in the user and computer context.


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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    The force update looks really handy!

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    Mr.Ben's Avatar
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    The free version of SpecOps Gpupdate has done this for years!

    Remote Group Policy Update gpupdate | Specops Gpupdate

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    Quote Originally Posted by FN-GM View Post
    The force update looks really handy!
    it does indeed, and is amazing that this wasn't included in windows 2000.

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    I m excited about windows 8 server just not windows 8 client

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    Quote Originally Posted by CyberNerd View Post
    is amazing that this wasn't included in Windows 2000.
    Better late than never! Mounting ISOs is another feature which shouldn't have taken more than a decade to implement.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    It looks a nice idea, however it is easy enough to reduce Group Policy refresh from the default 90 minutes to say 5 or 10 minutes with existing GPOs. You could accomplish this ever since Windows 2000 Server, so it's not going to be that useful to me!

    What would be really good is to somehow see all machines which have had MSIs applied, similar to WSUS in a way. You can easily see via a pie chart which machines are up-to-date.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    It looks a nice idea, however it is easy enough to reduce Group Policy refresh from the default 90 minutes to say 5 or 10 minutes with existing GPOs. You could accomplish this ever since Windows 2000 Server, so it's not going to be that useful to me!

    What would be really good is to somehow see all machines which have had MSIs applied, similar to WSUS in a way. You can easily see via a pie chart which machines are up-to-date.
    could wsus be changed to do software deploys as well wsuis win server update & install server

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    Michael's Avatar
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    Probably, but it would be nice to have something official from Microsoft

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    it would be nice but it would encroach on SCCM

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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    Probably, but it would be nice to have something official from Microsoft
    that was what i was meaning could the make wsus 4 do that as they do seem to be moving away from msi/mst which ad does to msi/msp/xml which needs scripting

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